Illegal Immigrant Injured at Work: Can He Get Workers’ Comp?
While workers’ compensation is a right that is extended to any employee that is hurt while on the job, there is often a question as to whether or not this right applies for illegal immigrants. Illegal immigrants are typically hired as undocumented workers and therefore do not fill out the normal process and paperwork required of other employees. This is illegal for companies to do, under the Immigration Reform and Control Act, however when companies do it anyways, it creates awkward scenarios with regards to workers’ compensation.
When it comes to workers’ comp for undocumented employees, the individual State law dictates how it is handled. In some states, including Florida, undocumented workers are still eligible to receive workers’ compensation if they are injured while on the job. In others however, they are not eligible because they are not designated as employees and therefore do not receive the same benefits.
Undocumented workers are more often than not immediately terminated after they are found out to be illegal immigrants, which unfortunately also disqualifies them for workers’ compensation benefits. However, there are exceptions to this, namely if they had legal documents to work, but then those documents expired. Since they were official employees for a certain amount of time, they are thereby eligible for workers’ comp from the employer at any time. Again, the nature of this situation does depend on the State law.
If you or someone you know is in the midst of a workers’ comp claim and believe that you are unjustly treated or have your claim denied, you may have grounds for a lawsuit to win workers’ compensation benefits. At the Franco Firm, we are well-versed in workers’ compensation law and can help you win your case with ease. To schedule a free consultation with us today, please call (813) 872-0929.